Latest Rail News


First Crossrail Aventra bodyshell completed at Bombardier plant

The production of Crossrail trains has reached “an important milestone” with the completion of the first Aventra bodyshell at Bombardier’s train manufacturing plant in Derby.

The test carriage is being used to refine the design and manufacturing techniques needed for the production of 594 carriages making up 66 Crossrail trains.

Joe Bednall, Bombardier’s project director, said: “This assembled bodyshell, which has progressed rapidly from a blank piece of paper through to build and test, is the first off the production line for the Crossrail project. It will first go to be tested, to validate the body shell design, before being painted and re-assembled to form the client’s cab and saloon mock-up.

“The on-time completion of this new lightweight body shell design marks an important milestone in the ongoing successful delivery of the Crossrail project.”

Transport secretary Patrick McLoughlin added that the new trains showcase British engineering “at its best”.

The 200m-long trains will provide space for up to 1,500 passengers, to relieve congestion on east-west London journeys and beyond into Berkshire in the west and Essex in the east.

They will have wide interconnecting gangways and three double doors on each side of each carriage ensuring high capacity and quick boarding times vital to busy central stations.

The first trains will operate between Liverpool Street and Shenfield from May 2017, extended to the central section in 2018 ahead of the full Crossrail route from Reading and Heathrow in the west to Shenfield and Abbey Wood in the east, set for 2019.

Crossrail has already completed the tunnelling works for the £14.8bn east-west railway, with 26 miles of new train tunnels created under the capital.

Tunnelling began in the summer of 2012 and ended at Farringdon with the breakthrough of tunnelling machine Victoria. During that time, eight 1,000 tonne tunnelling machines have bored 26 miles of new 6.2 diameter rail tunnels.

In late July, work began in three key areas of the surface section of the Crossrail Anglia route, comprising a 16.4-mile section from Stratford in east London to Shenfield in Essex.


Andrew Gwilt   10/09/2015 at 18:53

Bombardier have got a lot of work to produce brand new trains including the Class 387/2 Electrostara for Gatwick Express & 387/3 Electrostars for Great Western Railway with the Class 387/1's Electrostars to be cascaded to GWR once Thameslink's Class 700's Siemens Desiro City trains are built and are in full service. And of course the Class 345's to be built for MTR Crossrail. London Overground have ordered 45 brand new Aventra trains for Romford-Upminster, Lea Valley Services to-Enfield Town, Cheshunt and Chingford services to/from London Liverpool Street and Gospel Oak-Barking line once the overhead electrification has been installed & erected and the extension to Barking Riverside is to be built and Bombardier to win the contract to build new trains for Merseyrail to replace the ageing Class 507 & Class 508 trains (if approved or if Hitachi wins then Hitachi are to build the AT100 Metro Trains for Merseyrail) and other future new trains for other routes in the future including Bombardier to build more Class 379 Electrostars for Abellio Greater Anglia if it's approved by the government and DfT to let Bombardier build more Class 379's for Abellio GA to replace the Class 321's and Class 317's.

Jak Jaye   11/09/2015 at 14:47

Pity our useless transport minister didnt heed his own words 'British Engineering at its best' when he ordered all that Japanese rubbish

Add your comment


Rail industry Focus

View all News


The challenge of completing Crossrail

05/07/2019The challenge of completing Crossrail

With a new plan now in place to deliver Crossrail, Hedley Ayres, National Audit Office manager, major projects and programmes, takes a look at ho... more >
Preparing the industry to deliver trains for the future

04/07/2019Preparing the industry to deliver trains for the future

The move to decarbonise the rail network involves shifting to cleaner modes of traction by 2050. David Clarke, technical director at the Railway ... more >

'the sleepers' blog

On the right track, Sulzer is awarded RISAS accreditation for Nottingham Service Centre

29/06/2020On the right track, Sulzer is awarded RISAS accreditation for Nottingham Service Centre

Following an independent audit, Sulzer’s Nottingham Service Centre has been accepted as part of the rail industry supplier approval scheme (RISAS). The accreditation reinforces the high-quality standards that are maintained by Sulzer’s... more >
read more blog posts from 'the sleeper' >


Andrew Haines, CE of Network Rail, tells BBC News his organisation could issue future rail franchises

24/06/2019Andrew Haines, CE of Network Rail, tells BBC News his organisation could issue future rail franchises

Andrew Haines, the Chief Executive of Network Rail, has told the Today programme on Radio 4's BBC’s flagship news programme that he would not rule out his organisation issuing future r... more >
Advancing the rail industry with management degree apprenticeships

08/05/2019Advancing the rail industry with management degree apprenticeships

In answering the pressing questions of how current and future generations of managers can provide solutions to high-profile infrastructure projects across the UK, Pearson Business School, part of... more >